World Rat Day: Poems About Real Holidays You’ve Never Heard Of
by J. Patrick Lewis; illustrated by Anna Raff (Candlewick, 2013)
Ever heard of “Dragon Appreciation Day” (January 16)? How about “International Cephalopod Awareness Day” ( October 8)? Or our personal favorite, “Chocolate-Covered Anything Day” (December 16)? Well, J. Patrick Lewis and Anna Raff have, and they’ve assembled a funny, surprising collection of poems and illustrations that pay tribute to lesser-known celebrations. From advice from a worm in “What the Worm Knows” (for Worm Day on March 15) to the susurrating, lyrical word-pictures of “Bats” (for Bat Appreciation Day on April 17), these poems introduce a variety of poetic forms along with the silly holidays they celebrate. These kid-friendly poems beg for classroom and programming extensions with stories, songs, and crafts, and this book would be a terrific holiday or end-of-year gift for the teacher on your list.